IT IS intriguing to note that the current Congress top leadership and Gandhi family members — Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka — are not listed as shareholders of Associated Journals.
However, Young Indian is the largest shareholder of Associated Journals and Sonia and Rahul are directors of that company. The other directors listed are Mallikarjun Kharge, Pawan Bansal, Suman Dubey and Sam Pitroda who are all also shareholders in Associated Journals. Congress leader Jitendra Singh said, “Equity shares were allotted as per procedures... there is no money laundering as payment was through cheque and this is to muzzle the voice of the people which Congress has been raising from the last 8 years.”
Shakti Singh Gohil, Congress spokesperson said, “There is no malafide intention. The newspaper was started to fight for Independence. It was reeling under financial stress. Congress helped it and the case is subjudice, so if there had been any corruption court should have taken a view on it.” Randeep Surjewala added, “We have responded to all queries from many days, so don’t want to indulge into it again and again.”
Nehru family names, including Indira Nehru Gandhi, Feroz Gandhi, Vijaylakshmi Pandit are listed as shareholders of Associated Journals which is under the scrutiny of the investigating agencies.
Among the other shareholders listed are Congress stalwarts Rafi Ahmed Kidwai, Purushottam Das Tandon, Rajni Patel, Jitendra Prasad, Mallikarjun Kharge, Pawan Kumar Bansal. Others include Prakash Narain Sapru, S. Venkitaramanan, Kesoram Cotton Mills, Abid Hussain.
When contacted, Congress General Secretary, K.C. Venugopal said, “There is no violation of laws and everything done is permissible in law. Venugopal alluded to political vendetta and said Young India is a non-profit company and there is no money laundering. “We will fight it out”, he said.
Who’s who of Congress in Associated Journals shareholders list: JYOTSNA Suri and the late Lalit Suri hold 50,000 shares each of Associated Journals which brings out the ‘National Herald’ of the Congress party.
The Young Indian is the largest shareholder of Associated Journals. Harbans Lal Malhotra and Sons holds 16,000 shares while Rameshwar Thakur is shown to hold 26,510 shares. Scindia Investment, Mohan Meakin hold 5,000 shares each. Others include a mix of Congress leaders past and present or those who have been close to the Gandhi family.